"From the Holy Spirit springs a never-ending joy, the likening unto God." - St. Basil
Catholic Life; or Feasts, Fasts & Devotions of the Ecclesiastical Year +Imprimatur 1908
Pentecost with the Jews was a feast in memory of the giving of the Law on Mount Sinai, amidst thunder and lightning, fifty days after their deliverance out of Egypt. Their feast was a type of ours, for on this day the Holy Ghost wrote the New Law, amidst a new kind of noise and fire, in the hearts of the faithful disciples, and by their mouths published it to the world. "When the days of Pentecost were accomplished, they were all together in one place: and suddenly there came a sound from Heaven, as of a mighty wind coming, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them parted tongues as it were of fire, and it sat upon every one of them: and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they began to speak with divers tongues, according as the Holy Ghost gave them to speak. Now there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men out of every nation under Heaven. And when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded in mind, because that every man heard them speak in his own tongue. And they were all amazed and wondered, saying: Behold, are not all these, that speak, Galileans? and how have we heard, every man our own tongue wherein we were born? Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and inhabitants of Mesopotamia, Judea, and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia, and Pamphylia, Egypt, and the parts of Lybia about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews also, and proselytes, Cretes, and Arabians: we have heard them speak in our own tongues the wonderful works of God" (Acts ii. 1-11). The Holy Ghost came in the form of fire to denote that He is a spiritual fire which enlightens the soul, purifies and inflames the heart, consumes what is vicious in it, and raises,
consecrates, and sacrifices it to God. He assumed the shape of tongues to express how He inspired the Apostles with knowledge and zeal, in order to enlighten and inflame the minds of men, and to preach the Gospel of Christ to all the world.
Three thousand were converted by St. Peter's first sermon, and five thousand by his second. These first-fruits of the Gospel gave themselves at once to the practice of the evangelical doctrine of Christ, and so became models of sanctity. They loved one another so that they all seemed to have one heart and soul. The pagans, astonished at this, exclaimed: "See how the Christians love one another!" They lived in common, selling all they had, and giving the price to the Apostles to be distributed according to each one's necessities. They rejoiced in sufferings and privations for the sake of Christ. They met daily to pray, to
receive instruction, and to partake of the Body and Blood of our Lord. Not less remarkable was the change in the Apostles themselves. Before the descent of the Holy Ghost they were ignorant and fearful, but after, they were so enlightened as to be able to explain all the Scriptures and Divine mysteries; so courageous as to proclaim openly Christ's Resurrection, which they confirmed by astonishing miracles, and by suffering persecution and death itself in testimony of the truths they preached. We ought, on this great feast, to beg the Holy Ghost to imprint on our hearts the Law of God and the maxims of Jesus Christ; to give us a lively faith, in and a great love for, them, and courage to confess them by a life in conformity with their teaching. We ought also to resolve to imitate the lives of the first Christians by resignation in suffering, sincere love of our neighbour, assiduity in prayer, attention to the Word of God, alms-giving, and the frequentation of the Sacraments, and thus show ourselves worthy children of our Holy Mother the Church.
“Refine and purge our earthly parts:
But, O, inflame and fire our hearts!
Our frailties help, our vice control,
Submit and senses to the soul;
And when rebellious they are grown,
Then lay Thy hand, and hold them down:
Make us eternal truths receive,
And practice all that we believe."
Example.- St. Polycarp.
St. Polycarp, disciple of the Apostle St. John, and Bishop of Smyrna, suffered martyrdom under Marcus Aurelius. The Proconsul Quadratus caused him to be arrested and brought before him as being a chief propagator of a religion prohibited by the Emperor. He had his tribunal erected in an amphitheater. Polycarp stood before him, in the presence of an immense multitude of pagans, who, in spite of their hatred for the Christians, could not help admiring him, being so venerable, and having such a sweet majesty and holy joy in his features. "Polycarp!" said the Proconsul, "swear by the fortune of Cæsar, and curse Christ." The holy man replied, smiling: "For eighty-six years I have served this good Master, and I have received nothing but benefits from Him. What odious ingratitude it would be, then, to blaspheme Him! Ah! I will bless Him till my last sigh, and I am happy to be able to glorify Him by declaring that I am a Christian."
A few minutes later the public crier said: "Polycarp has confessed that he is a Christian." All the multitude demanded that he should be burned alive. In a short time the stake and fire were ready. Polycarp divested himself of his principal garments, and then, mounting the faggots, he offered himself to God as a holocaust, and recited the following prayer: "Receive, O Father Eternal, the life which Thou hast given me. I thank Thee for deigning to number me among Thy martyrs, and for making me a sharer in the chalice and sufferings of Thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. I praise Thee, I glorify Thee, I bless Thee with Thy only Son, Who is the sovereign Priest and Eternal Pontiff, who livest and reignest with Thee and the Holy Ghost for ever and ever."
Amidst wonderful miracles, and the admiration of the spectators, his glorious soul went unto the bosom of the Eternal Father, January 26, A.D. 169.
Pentecost Give-A-Way & Coloring Contest
A blessed Pentecost to you all! To celebrate this great event in the Liturgical Year we are going to be doing a give-a-way every day from now until Trinity Sunday! A new give-a-way will be posted every day and the winners of ALL the give-a-ways will be shared on Trinity Sunday, May 26th 2013, in which all give-a-ways will end at that point. Make sure to visit every day until then to enter that day's prize! Today we are giving away a copy of the wonderful book, one of my absolute favorites, Catholic Life; or Feasts, Fasts & Devotions of the Ecclesiastical Year.
The above article was taken from this book and this is also where the articals from last years Holy Simplicity Planner
came from. Those articles were removed this year, in their place are the Liturgical Journaling/Planning pages and the whole entire Catholic Life
book is now available separate as an exact reprint of the original title. Details on how to enter today's give away are below, as well as details on the children's give away (coloring contest).
*** We are bumping this post up as the wrong links were placed for getting to the Catholic Life book, they have now been corrected and are working. We apologize for any inconvenience.
For those of you who follow our blog as well as those who purchased the Holy Simplicity Planner
last year, you are quite familiar with this little gem. Its a favorite title of ours along with Dom Gueragner's Liturgical Year
! We are so excited to announce that Catholic Life or The Feasts, Fasts, and Devotions of the Ecclesiastical Year
is now back in print! This paperback version allows for affordability and use. Its the perfect companion with the Holy Simplicity Planner
which is why it was included IN last years version. We made the decision to remove the title and have it reprinted on its own so that it would not have to be purchased in a consumable form every year. Now this title may be used and loved year after year!
As it is an exact reprint of the 1908 version it also contains many black and white pictures for the various feast days as well as a few articles that were not in last years Holy Simplicity Planner
as there was not enough space to include them all. But they are all here now in this nice compact handy book!
To preview some of the articles please visit our various Liturgical Year pages, a few of them can be found by visiting these specific pages: Catholic Life Introduction, Advent, Christmas, Lent
. If you and your family follow the Liturgical Year this is the best little book to have as a guide! It covers all the major feasts, fasts and devotions within the Catholic Church and is a wonderful guide to keeping those Catholic traditions in the home. It is the perfect companion with the Holy Simplicity Planner
as well as Dom Gueranger's Liturgical Year
. We hope that you will enjoy this title as much as we do! Visit All the Saint's Books for more details on Catholic Life.
Ps.... There are new previews of the children's planners up at All The Saint's Books
"The Rosary is the most efficacious prayer for the increase in the hearts of the faithful of devotion toward the
Mother of God." - Leo XIII
Catholic Life - Feasts, Fasts and Devotions
Printed by Washbourne
This entire month - especially the first Sunday - is devoted to honour the mysteries of the Holy Rosary.
The universal popularity of this devotion, and the wonderful graces obtained by its practice, are the best guarantees of its excellence.
The prayers of which it is made up were the favourite prayers of the Church in all ages. The mysteries commemorated make a review of what our Divine Redeemer did and suffered for us. In them we find incitement to practice the virtues most necessary for procuring eternal happiness.
It is easy to see, then, what a powerful means we have to persevere in the love of God, hatred of sin, and control of our passions. Besides, the example of Jesus and Mary encourages us, in our trials, to imitate them.
How many times has the remembrance of the nightly family Rosary of earlier years served as an anchor to a storm-tossed soul, or a shield to defend the youth forced by circumstances to face the dances of bad example or wily seductions? Those in charge of others ought to establish the recitation of the Rosary in common every night before retiring to rest. No matter how humble the home may be or how scant its comforts, the incense of family prayer will make it dear to God, and attract the protection of the Queen of Heaven. Every home thus blessed becomes a cradle of faith, a school of virtue, and a citadel of the Church against the assaults of immorality and infidelity.
"How oft, when trouble filled my breast,
Or sin my conscience pained,
Through thee I sought for peace and rest,
Through thee I peace obtained!
Then hence, in all my pain and cares,
I'll seek for help in thee,
E'er trusting, through thy powerful prayers,
To gain eternity."
Example - Gluck
Gluck, the celebrated composer, was the delicate son of very poor parents in Vienna. He had a beautiful voice, but when singing in the choir of the cathedral he took care that his singing was praying, and not an attempt to attract the attention of the audience.
One day when he had sung an anthem to Mary, in better style than usual, a monk went up to him, and said with emotion, "Oh, my son, you made me shed the most delicious tears of my life to-day. I have nothing to give you in token of my admiration but these Rosary Beads. Keep it in memory of me. Say at least a part of it every day; and if you are faithful to this practice, you will be as dear to God as you will some day be great amongst men."
Gluck was faithful to his Rosary. His family was too poor to allow him to continue his studies. It happened one evening that he was visited by a celebrated choir-master, who was commissioned to go to Italy to collect the works of Palestrina. As a result of the visit, he took the boy with him, promising to complete his instruction. Thence-forth, Gluck walked with giant strides on the path of fame, but was always faithful to his practices of piety.
At the Court of Vienna, in the midst of the evening's amusement, he - now the illustrious maestro - would disappear, and, like a priest for his Office, seek solitude to say his Rosary.
When death, after a glorious life, came to strike him down, it found him prepared. He held in his hand the Beads presented to him in his youthful days by the pious monk.
We are happy to announce the winners of this month's book give -a- way! Make sure to keep checking back as we have a special give -a- way in store for November!
Please email your mailing address in order to claim you prize, all addresses must be in by Friday October 12th 2012 Noon PST in order to receive your prize.
Winner's of the Guardian Angel Book Give -a- Way!
Erin and Elise!
Winners of the Rosary Books Give -a- Way!
Rhonda S Lynch
"Behold, our King marcheth before us, who will fight for us. Let us follow Him manfully; let no one fear terrors; let us go forward together. Jesus will be with us."
The last Sunday in Lent is called Palm Sunday, from the ceremony of blessing palm branches and distributing them to the faithful. In Catholic countries they are carried in the hands during the procession. We hold them in our hands during the reading of the Passion at Mass, and then take them home, as the Church invokes a blessing on those places to which they are taken. The whole ceremony is intended to commemorate the triumphal entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem, six days before His death. The Gospel narrative is as follows: "At that time Jesus drawing near Jerusalem, and being come to Bethphage, at Mount Olivet, He sent two of His disciples and said to them: Go ye into the village that is over against you, and immediately you shall find an ass tied and a colt with her; loose them and bring them to Me. And if any man shall say anything to you, say ye, that the Lord hath need of them; and forthwith he will let them go. Now all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, Tell ye the daughter of Sion. Behold thy King cometh to thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt, the foal of her that is used to the yoke.
And the disciples going, did as Jesus had commanded them and they brought the ass and the colt, and laid their garments upon them, and made Him sit thereon. And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way, and others cut down boughs from the trees, and strewed them in the way; and the multitudes that went before that followed, cried, saying: Hosanna to the Son of David. Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord" (Math. xxi. 1-9).
Our Lord intended to show by His triumphal entry how by His death He would triumph over the devil, the world, and the flesh, and open Heaven to us. He made use of an ass to show how much He contemned human greatness, and to fulfill an eminent prophecy which had ages before pointed out the Messias by such an approach to Jerusalem (Zach. ix. 9).
The good dispositions of the crowd did not last long, for ere a week had passed the Hosannas were changed into "Crucify Him!" "Away with Him!" This shows us that we are not to depend on worldly applause, nor upon devotion, which comes only in fits and starts, but that we are constantly to implore God's strengthening grace, lest we desert Him in the time of danger. Let us invite our dear Lord to reign over our hearts, and to keep our unruly passions under control.
"Hosanna to the Son of David! Bring
To Him Who cometh in God's name, our King,
Glory and peace! Loud, loud
Example. - Godfrey De Bouillon
Godfrey de Bouillon, whose name is one of the glories of Belgium, was in his youth trained in Christian piety by his mother Ida, and in the use of arms by his father, who was a renowned warrior. When he had reached the years of manhood he possessed all the qualities of a great Prince and a Christian hero. Hence he was chose to take command of the First Crusade, numbering about six hundred thousand men. Overcoming all difficulties and dangers, he succeeded in driving the infidels from the Holy Places, and soon entered Jerusalem at the head of his victorious army. Arrangements being made to proclaim him King of Jerusalem, and to crown him with a costly diadem of gold, he refused it, saying, "God forbid that I should wear a crown of gold where the King of Kings wore a crown of thorns."